Ramblings from Reggie: A night out proves good for the soul

The talk of the town this week is clearly going to be based on sports. The Bears’ gut-wrenching season marches on. The fans are ecstatic, but not sold on this team. Remember, Bears fans, the Steelers limped into the playoffs and won it all last season. How about another Bears/Patriots rematch?

The other talk is about the IceHogs, and that story has it all. My final thoughts about this are the politicians had this sealed, delivered and shoved down our throats from the beginning. I hope the IceHogs owners, Dr. Kris Tumilowicz and Craig Drecktrah, got theirs out of it. The citizens were never part of this process. I’m not opposed to MetroCentre renovations, but the government running private business is wrong in all forms.

A few months ago in the daily, they had a list of Winnebago County’s largest employers, and most of them were governments. Does that scare anybody but me?

A few non-downtown thoughts…

Michael Verace has done a great job in his new place. His offering is exceptional, and his business—Michael’s—is good. What a good story for the comeback kid.

I finally did a little getting out last weekend with a friend of mine, Dana, and we enjoyed every stop. We started at the Backyard Grill in Loves Park for a couple of drinks and some great atmosphere.

Rich and Dana are fantastic hosts and do such a great job. That place is run by two pros. We then went to Nunzio’s for dinner. My friend Dana had the Steak Sinatra, and she was amazed. Nunzio is also a great operator, and has been around forever.

After dinner, we stopped by Michael’s and had an after-dinner drink. As usual, the hospitality was fantastic, and the crowd was buzzing. I asked Michael about a rumor of him expanding downtown, and he told me he has enough to do running his place. There are always rumors in this business. Dana then wanted to hear some karaoke, so, naturally, we headed to the Rue Marche. My buddy, Paul, owns that place. We’ve been friends since we were 12, and I appreciate the fact a Red Sox fan and a Yankees fan can get along so well. The place was packed, and the karaoke was flowing.

We wound up at Swilligan’s “The Pub,” and I was pleasantly surprised it was full. I thought it would be a slow night. Thanks to all our loyal customers. It was nice to get out and see old friends. It was a good theme, and it was good for the soul.

Reggie Roberson is owner of Swilligan’s “The Pub,” 200 N. Church St.

From the Jan. 17-23, 2007, issue

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